Like Andy Dufresne, Zack Johnson Believes Hope Can Be A Good Thing & Golf Still Wins

“Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”

One of the more memorable lines from Andy Dufresne in the ‘The Shawshank Redemption’.

Sharing this theme is USA Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson, clearly a golfer with hope.  Hope that one day he’ll wake-up and all will be right with the game of golf.

Andy Dufresne listening to the opera after locking himself into the wardern’s office in the movie ‘The Shawshank Redemption

At the moment, and with 14 months to tee-off in the Rome Ryder Cup, Johnson hasn’t a hope in hell idea who will be left around who hasn’t already jumped the PGA Tour fence to join LIV Golf and can be in selecion to be in the 12-man side he’ll take to the Italian capital for the defence of the Ryder Cup.

Like all of us, Johnson’s right in saying: “I don’t think anybody foresaw this, aside from those that have probably constructed the other entity.

“I just hope things settle down. I hope in the end, that golf still wins. I hope in the end, that we all understand that no one’s above this great game. And somehow, you know, when it comes to professional golf, I would say those that paved the way are still revered.”

Johnson, who was proudly photographed with an Iowa-grown corn cob sticking out of the Claret Jug soon after capturing the 2015 Open, had played in five USA Ryder Cup sides though it was not till his fifth appearance in 2016, he played in a winning side.

Zach Johnson about to sink his teeth into a corn cob sticking out of the Claret Jug.

Now there’s an example of hope springs eternal.

And in the overwhelming joy in being named the 2023 USA Team captain, the 46-year-old double major-winner, not for a milli-second could have thought what has since transpired.

However, and like his yet-to-be announced replacement 2023 European Captain, each will be leading teams missing some of the best players in the game, players who have been the cornerstones of the Ryder Cup for more than a decade.

Who will be left around to take their places and with the tide to join to LIV Golf growing stronger by the week.

“I don’t have a concern right now because the way it sits right now”, said Johnson.  “It’s a fluid situation. You know, things are changing almost by the week. I can tell you this: if the situation becomes uncomfortable, or stretches me in different directions, I’ve always embraced that.”

Of course, I could single out another line from ‘The Shawshank Redemption‘, a line by ‘Red’ or Morgan Freeman where he says: “Let me tell you something, my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.”

The next 14 months will very much test the patience of Johnson and his European captain opponent and they are each going to rely heavily on the ‘H’ word.

Of Note – Johnson’s remarks were at this week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic and appearing in a superb article by Michael Rosenburg in Morning Read.



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